Tribeless Nomad (tribelessnomad) wrote in lj_userdoc,
Tribeless Nomad
tribelessnomad
lj_userdoc

FAQ categories

Ideally, FAQs and Guides would be organized into identical categories. That way, users would only have to get used to one set of headings, and Guides could be introduced without changing the headings on the main Support page.

However, the planned arrangement of Guides into Chapters doesn't quite meet all the requirements of a FAQ category scheme. Here's a list of reasons why FAQ categories might not match the Guide Chapters exactly. I compiled the list by trying to fit the existing FAQs into Guide Chapters, and by studying the FAQ categories proposed at http://www.livejournal.com/talkread.bml?itemid=7233924:
  1. Guides don't cover everything. There are no plans yet for an introductory Guide, or for Guides covering client software or embedding, or for Guides explaining how to do things on other websites. Some FAQs do fall into these categories, so we'll need FAQ categories like "About LiveJournal", "Client Software for Windows", and "Working with Other Sites".
  2. Some topics are covered by more FAQs than Guides, or vice versa, but I've tried to minimize this issue by rearranging the Guides a little. For example, we have 6 FAQs on User Pictures, which justifies making that a category, but only 2 Guides to the same subject, which didn't originally seem to justify creating a Chapter. For consistency, I've now made "User Pictures" a separate Chapter in the list of Guides. For similar reasons, I've moved the "Security Levels" Guide from "Journal Entries" (which is overcrowded with FAQs) to the Chapter dealing with Friends.
  3. FAQ categories serve an administrative purpose, as well as helping users to find information. Volunteers specializing in particular areas (e.g., "Topic Directory") can be granted permission to maintain FAQs in that specific category. Whether we should break things down so finely for administrative reasons is something we should perhaps reconsider, but I think it's an issue that can be dealt with some other time.
  4. Guides are organized as logically as possible, which is usually but not always the best way to assist users in looking up questions. Should we try to re-arrange some of the FAQs, for users who don't understand the site well enough to make sense of the "logical" arrangement? Proposals by leora and manhattan illustrate two ways we might do this:
    • Users can face certain questions (like "Why does my journal suddenly require me to scroll?") without knowing what their problem area is, so perhaps we should place these in a "general troubleshooting" category. Another troubleshooting question that might be considered "general" is "Why am I not showing up in the directory?" Users with other troubleshooting questions should be able to figure out easily enough which category they should look in.
    • We could place all picture-related FAQs in a single category. A "Graphics" category would cover not only userpics but also pictures in journal entries (dealt with under "Journal Entries" in the logical arrangement), background images (logically placed under "Customization"), and mood themes (another "Customization" topic).
    These are both good ideas, and they clearly cater to inexperienced users who need the most help. However, I still hesitate to endorse these categories, because they overlap with others. If we avoid overlapping categories, regular users of the FAQs will normally have to consult only one category when they look for a question; if it's not listed there, they can be fairly sure it's not a FAQ. If we allow overlapping categories, anyone who fails to find a question in the logical place will then have to look through other categories, too (including "Troubleshooting", which could cover anything at all). I haven't been able to decide whether catering to newbies is worth this price. Opinions, anyone?
  5. FAQ categories should perhaps match Support Request categories in certain cases. So the Guide Chapter called "Customizing your journal" could appear as "Customization" in the list of FAQ categories.
Here's my idea of a "logical" grouping of FAQs. All comments are welcome. I'm especially keen to get reactions to the options discussed in point 4 above.
About LiveJournal
Site Navigation Features
Accounts
User Pictures
Journal Entries
Comments
Topic Directory
Friends & Security Levels
Communities
Customization
Client Software
Additional Features (including To-Do List, which can be a separate category for now)
Conflicts with Other Users
Working with Other Sites


<lj-cut> here

About LiveJournal


Site Navigation Features


Accounts


User Pictures


Journal Entries


Comments


Topic Directory


Friends & Security Levels


Communities


Customization


To-Do List


Client Software


Additional Features


Conflicts with Other Users


Working with Other Sites

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